Ultimate guide to affiliate marketing

Last updated 14th January

Affiliate Marketing, it's the name of a niche industry that many websites are thriving from - yet they insist on keeping it as secretive and subliminal as possible. In fact, there's a very high chance that a website has made money from you as a result of Affiliate Marketing and you don't even know about it.

In this guide, you'll learn the basics of affiliate marketing and how it works, along with a few examples of how online betting affiliates are able to make some serious money without even owning an actual betting website.

First of all, let's break down the name and get a clear understanding of what it means. Affiliate Marketing is just 2 words combined together:

  • Affiliate - Someone who is a partner of another company
  • Marketing - The process of advertising a product in order to drive sales to it

Put them together and you get Affiliate Marketing, which is the name of an industry that involves someone who is an affiliate (partner) of another company, marketing that company's product online in hopes of referring new customers to it and bagging themselves a commission.

The basics of it are pretty simple and we'll give you an example from both the customer and the affiliate's perspective to give you a better idea of how it's done.

In this instance we'll give an example from the customers perspective. Let's say you're watching a football match on TV and you see an advert for William Hill's Bet £10 Get £30 in Free Bets new customer offer. You've decided you want to claim this offer and instead of directly visiting William Hill's website, you search Google for 'William Hill new customer offer' and click on a comparison website. This comparison website gives you all the facts you need and ensures you that you'll receive the offer you're looking for if you click on their 'Sign up now' button, which refers you to William Hill so that you can open an account and claim the new customer offer. Unknowingly to you, when you're referred to William Hill via the 'Sign up now' button, it's tracked using cookies and William Hill will pay the comparison website up to £80 in commission once you've placed your first bet of just £10. And yes, you read that correctly, William Hill is initially losing money, meanwhile the comparison website (the affiliate) is bagging some really easy commission. The reason William Hill are able to do this is because they assume the average betting customer will eventually spend much more than £80 during their time as a customer, so in the short-term it's all about paying the affiliate a commission they're happy to work with.

Now, let's look from the comparison website's perspective, as they are the affiliate in this scenario. Their role is finding ways to get users to their website who are interested in signing up to William Hill, and most probably a long list of other betting websites they're affiliated with who pay them commission for referring new customers. They've got a neat trick going on as they show up on Google for searches such as 'William Hill promo code' and 'William Hill new customer offer', which only people who are already planning on signing up to William Hill would be searching for. This makes it really easy as it's just a case of showing these users the facts about the new customer offer they're looking for, then sending them on their way to William Hill via a 'Sign up now' or 'Join here' CTA (call to action) button.

So as you can see, the logistics of customer acquisition and the role of the affiliate, who in this scenario operates the comparison website, are pretty plain and simple. The customer is looking for reassurance that they're going to receive the offer they've seen on TV, and the comparison website provides them with that reassurance and then refers them to William Hill to earn themselves a commission.

At this point you might be wondering how it is that the affiliate in the example above is able to partner with the betting websites and track the customers they refer to them. This is done by applying and being accepted into a website known as an Affiliate Network AKA. Affiliate Program, such as Betting.Partners. This is a platform that grants you access to a great deal of marketing tools that can be used to assist you in your efforts of referring customers, as well as keeping track of the clicks, customers and commission your efforts generate. The best part is, absolutely anyone can apply and give it a go. Click here to apply as an affiliate.

That concludes all there is to know about affiliate marketing and what it means to be an affiliate. If it's sparked your interest and you're now thinking of which industry to become an affiliate in, you can read our top 10 industries to become an affiliate in.

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